Saturday, January 9, 2016

Highlights of 2015!

I wanted to write this on 1st of 2nd of Jan but could only manage this now… In fact I am writing this as I recover from the only lowlight of 2015! I came down with Dengue on 16th Dec. Also spent couple of days in a hospital – still recovering from it as I finally write this! :-)

Recently, at a reunion, where many of us were meeting after 25 years, late at night after a few drinks, somehow we got talking about the highlights of each of our lives….What have been the highlights of my life? So many things have happened; some really big and some that didn’t seem very important at the time they occurred but have gained serious significance over time.

But this manmade juncture, where we end one year and start the new one, is probably a good point to reflect on the past twelve months for highlights… I really needed to reflect on 2015 since it has been a year without gainful employment – a year very different from the last many in that sense.

In Feb 2015, I visited Tapasi in Singapore – I had visited the city twice before, but both the times it was on work and I had not had a chance to be a tourist. I roamed around the city on my own for a while and then Tapu took me around to show what appealed to her.  While I enjoyed the sights, sounds and smells of the splendid city, the highlight of the trip was the long conversations with Tapu.

We talked at home, over cups of coffee, over wonderful meals, over wine… Early in the morning and late in the night… We talked while driving around and on long walks by the bay; at fancy restaurants and small coffee shops…. We talked about places; about people; about cultures and rituals; what we liked and what we hated; frivolous matters and important subjects. And yet somehow, it seemed like we didn’t have enough time – to talk!

In July, Reading Hour published my short story ‘Lost Friend’. My first published work! I was asked if I was thrilled, and I couldn’t really say no to that but what I felt most strongly was contentment! And then my novel (The Ripple Effect) got accepted by Vishwakarma Publications! It is in works to be published and it is definitely one of the things that makes me look at 2016 very positively! :-)

Every year, I look for opportunities to go away around Diwali time – someplace away from all the razzle-dazzle and more importantly away from all the fire crackers! I have been managing that more often than not. Yet, Diwali of 2015 was unique – went to a small village in Konkan with family. Stayed right by the sea, watched the waves, first thing in the morning and the last thing at night! Watched the sunset every evening and walked the beach collecting shells! During the day, we went to nearby villages and out of the way temples – temples that one could go only on foot by climbing down and then climbing up a hill – place so quiet that there was no one else other than us!

I have been interested in spirituality for a while now; have even ventured into a few spiritual adventures. I had heard about Isha Foundation some time back and then I read and listened to Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev (Isha blog, youtube). So finally I signed up for their Inner Engineering program and went to their Ashram near Coimbatore. The place is just amazing! Saying that it is designed beautifully, architected well and is a wonderful experience, somehow does not seem enough! It is a lot more than what I can describe in words.
The course itself was very good. But it is not just the course – but what I want to do beyond that – how I want to practice what I was taught and the change I feel in myself. I can’t really describe it; one needs to experience it…